Right wing group distributes pamphlets linking socialism and abortion
The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property is a Pennsylvania-based group of about 120,000 “lay Catholic Americans concerned about the moral crisis shaking the remnants of Christian civilization.” The group’s ginned up rhetoric has made its way to the Catholic community of Westchester, Miami — a community that is part of state Sen. Anitere Flores’ constituency.
The group is not very well known, but it has inserted itself into fights such as the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell and same-sex marriage — most notably, the court battle over the subject in California in 2008.
According to Media Transparency, a 501(c)(3) charity aimed at tracking “the money behind conservative media,” Tradition, Family and Property responded to the California court decision by buying “advertisements critical of the decision, appearing ‘simultaneously’ in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and the Washington Times, costing the group perhaps as much as three-quarters of a million dollars.”
Tradition, Family and Property describes itself as being “on the front lines of the Culture War.” The group mostly sends out books, newsletters and booklets to individuals who are members and supporters of the group.
Copies of a booklet entitled “Ten More Good Reasons to Fight Against Abortion” that make the case that socialism leads to abortion have made their way to a Catholic church in Westchester, Miami, where Flores is a member.
The booklet claims:
Socialists have never been known to oppose abortion. By its own principles, socialism will always lead to abortion. Likewise, an abortion mentality of eliminating responsibility for one’s action will eventually lead to socialism.
Tradition, Family and Property calls on all anti-abortion activists to also fight against socialism. They explain that “consistent pro-life activists must be ardently anti-socialist activists,” because:
Socialism and Communism are the same ideology. … Socialism violates personal freedom. … Socialism violates human nature. …Socialism Violates private property. …Socialism opposes traditional marriage. …Socialism opposes parental rights in education. …Socialism promotes radical equality. …Socialism promotes Atheism. …Socialism promotes relativism. … Socialism mocks religion.
As a member of Tradition, Family and Property’s staff explains, it is most likely that a church member (or members) distributed these booklets themselves. However, this sort of rhetoric strikes a particular chord with a community that identifies as mostly anti-communist and adds more fiery rhetoric to an already heated debate. Even though the tactic of inciting the fear of socialism in a conservative population is nothing new, even in Florida, it is very effective.
As of 2000, the Westchester community had the highest percentage of people with Cuban ancestry in the country. This translates into a community with predominately politically and socially conservative views. Most identify themselves as anti-communists.
Flores is currently the sponsor of a piece of legislation in the Senate that would amend Florida’s Constitution to ban the use of public funds for abortions. She also led the charge to reintroduce the mandatory-ultrasound bill after it was vetoed by then-Gov. Charlie Crist last year.
When asked for her thoughts on the Tradition, Family and Property booklets, Flores emailed the Independent to say she has never seen the pamphlets and had no role in placing them at her church.
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